Fan Fiction: Critiquing Your Own Stories

Years ago when I was still active on Winglin and other online communities, there was an explosion of different authors and readers alike coming out with websites or their own page to critique different fan fiction authors. Whether it was to help the authors improve their writing techniques or just something fun to do, it was quite an experience. I never submitted my stories to any of those websites but found them intriguing because I learned of how an author’s perspective could be versus how readers see it. It’s so obvious for everyday, published authors to go through this process. But at that time when I started posting my stories online, it was a new experience for me and it opened my eyes to some levels.

So, what’s the point of this post, right? Especially when I’ve been lagging soooo much on stories. This is an attempt to get back into it. Because the following will be an activity like the title said. I’m going to have fun and critique all the fanfictions I’ve ever written. Yes, I won’t leave anything untouched. But before I do, here’s a disclaimer for those who haven’t read the stories yet (so don’t say I didn’t warn you):

NOTE: The following contains spoilers (obviously from the title), SO if you haven’t read my stories yet, DO NOT proceed.

The beginning of the story had great potential and felt refreshing. It paved a nice and peaceful picture and a hopeful feeling because it described the two major characters’ feelings and goals in life. The humorous exchanges between several characters led readers to believe it would be a fun story. Although it had some typical formula of a small-town family with the scenic backdrop to pave the way, there was some mystery with various characters that readers could look forward to exploring. All in all, it paved a promising picture.

The problem with this story was that it was too wordy. It was one of my first attempts at writing fanfiction so it got so messy with descriptions. It didn’t take into account “show instead of telling” so it felt flaky and corny. In addition, because there was a setback with the last few chapters so it dived into the morbid side without intending to in the first place. It completely took away from the main plot and its lighthearted feeling that was established in the first place. A bad call. Like the feeling when the writers totally gave up and just wanted to end it already like how I often criticize them, lol. Also, the feeling of the celebs chosen was so random and unorganized, like lumping a bunch of people together just because. It felt like a test run.

Heaven’s Gift

The setting at the beach at the beginning of the story was promising and lighthearted. It presented a typical picture yet also let readers see a glimpse into each major character’s personality with a dash of humor. It seemed like they didn’t change much over the years, except for the circumstances around them. Light humor continued to occupy the scene, paving the story and pushing the major characters together–or apart–as time went by. There were some surprising details to the plot but it lacked some details here and there, not allowing the full potential of the plot to be explored.

HIDE & SEEK

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Honey In Tea

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Neurotic

Like some other stories, it started out describing the scenery and then introducing the characters. The weather, once again, like some other stories, gave hints to what the plot was going to be like. There was some side humor but just subtle, not too much. It was saying like the story meant business and it was no time to joke around, not really.

It was an interesting concept although it didn’t take in a lot of rules of sci-fi and went off the rails regarding technicalities. However, what made up for it was the layout of the major characters. It kept consistent and featured three female leads. What broke the rule for the third one was leading into a happier, hopeful ending than was predicted. It also gave more character and depth to one of the so-called villains and even allowed for that person to redeem himself and had a start over.

Payback

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Scheming Nature

This was a typical setup of two pairings that were living on the opposite side of society. They met and interacted and somehow became entangled in a complex scheme. It provided a sense of mystery to the overall story and made the readers want to know what was to come and where the story was heading toward. The ending was a bit of an unknown, especially after the intense confrontations between two of the major characters and how it went down. However, it proved to be going on a typical route with allowing all problems to be resolved in a more favorable manner.

This story attempted to mock the life of gangsters and how it was supposed to be yet failed because, in the end, it was equally cliche and was corny in a sense of allowing some bizarre details to come into play. Although having the theme of gang-related activities as the backdrop for the plot, it failed to achieve its intended effect because of the halfway compromise of the mood as an overall. Sometimes, it edged toward the side of intensity or darkness that could push past the barriers of safety but it was shy of making it into something much more.

Slanted Thoughts

The story started out really random, bordering childishness because of the constant fights between two of the major characters. However, it evolved into a sadder story because of what happened at the end. Although it attempted to resurrect the atmosphere with some side humor, the plot never recovered with the happiness felt at the beginning of the story. It was later explained in the second part why it was so and eventually leading the plot into a darker path than was originally intended to–or so it seemed when compared to the beginning of the first part. What the plot lacked severely was the explanation and more details into a certain mysterious organization that impacted some characters’ lives so many years and ongoing. Some of the undertones provided a hint about how they were a big deal and were not to be messed with. Yet it failed to back up the claim as the story went along and eventually wrapped up. It also never explained why Tammy’s character had so much impact on what Wallace’s life was going to be and yet left him alone after he had apparently restored his memories. Or was it because it was to emphasize how scary he was if he returned to his past self? Or because the organization didn’t care how things turned out and that it was only important they kept everything a secret? Some things were never answered.

Slicing Boundary

This was a fun read, at least at the beginning. Sure, there were childish humor and constant competition between the two siblings–or so readers thought as it was with typical siblings rivalry. However, it took a dark turn, killing a major character unnecessarily. Was that an attempt to be overdramatic? Or was it because the writer just decided to give up and end it that way?

The Business

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The Dating Game

The story seemed really random but that wasn’t a bad thing. It hinted potential with so many major characters involved and how each was at a different point in their lives. It was fascinating to see how they all met and would become important–one way or another–in each other’s lives. The story shifted between humor and intensity and back again. Yet always managed to push the plot forward, introducing new characters or circumstances into their lives and how they would react to those situations.

Although the cast was so extended that it provided an outlet for many story arches yet because it was so crowded that it didn’t allow for a focus on some characters. Also, some of the characters had suffered from the inconsistency of personality, except for the main characters. It also created an unrealistic atmosphere with so many of their gatherings and their strong bonds over the years. It could be both good and bad but mostly it was unrealistic. Not to mention how ridiculously meddlesome most of them were of one another’s lives. The occasional stalking of various parties was equally bizarre.

The Other Extreme

The first scene already gave a snapshot of what the story was going to be about and how the dark mood predicted the inevitable ending for some characters. The weather foreshadowed a lot of the scenes that were to come for the story. The layout wasn’t bad yet the constant side randomness and humor involving the characters downplayed the overall theme for the majority of the story. It was actually character-based and not plot-based like it should have been. The lack of information on both gang’s background made it hard to relate and didn’t allow for more interest toward that side of the story. It became a wannabe gangster story because it didn’t say how or why they were fighting or fleeing for their lives. It was only covered briefly at the beginning of how both sides had been fighting since forever yet never revealed the real reason why.

Tri-Visual

The storytelling style was strange yet intriguing. It made readers want to read more and find out what was going on and what was the deal with these characters. Or if they could get out from the current prison they were in. However, there were only glimpses here and there and some side details of the characters. They could have been extended to a much more complex story.

True Friendship

This story started out introducing the main characters right away and hinted at their established relationship and how it would come into play later on. The story began lighthearted with some side humor and then took a more serious turn as the characters acknowledge much more complex issues surrounding their lives. In some sense, the story allowed the characters to face reality with a hard punch. But in other sense, it felt a little dramatic and forced. Yet the story was still written a dialed down sort of way, like some subtlety of daily life happenings that could edge toward blandness but jumped back with a kick to tell us that reality will strike again. It was a mixture of complexity and simplicity. It had this balance and one tip of the scale would lead the story spiraling away.

When Wishes Come True

The story introduced some promising aspects, such as the story being told from the main character’s point of view. There were also inspirational quotes involved. So that sort of gave a feeling of a legit book. However, it took a shaky turn and ended up being a typical high school, mean girl type of war. There were some interesting ideas but the execution was terrible and the plot dull. If at all, that was.

Winds & Rain

Extremely disappointing because it seemed like an attempt to crank out something that involved the two main characters. It seemed like an unfinished story and didn’t involve a lot of details. It would have been better to wait for some sort of idea to come forth before continuing with the story. It should have been a one-shot, then it would make more sense.

Conclusion

So, aside from being random for this post, what’s the point here? Of all the stories I’ve written, I only liked True Friendship. Yes, that sad. I took it slow and made it through without feeling like I needed to rush anything or wanted to write to please readers. It wasn’t like I didn’t add in random conversations or some bizarre humor. The story had both. But what was different was how the two main characters didn’t end up together but also didn’t downplay their relationship throughout. It acknowledged some of the more realistic aspects of life, even if it didn’t allow for the story to cover all. I did get stuck on it at one time but the time spent thinking about the plot as an overall and side brainstorming, it had allowed me to change the ending for the better, at least to me.

I also realized some things about my writing styles. Well, I already realized it for a while now but here’s an outright confession, lol. Some characters, especially the main ones, tend to fall into one formula. So I think that’s something to take into account to try to make it different in the future. Or least mix it up a bit.

If anyone noticed, I think I got influenced by Gu Long and Jin Yong at times, lol. No jokes. Sad, but I read those two a lot so I got influenced, especially with describing sceneries and stuff. But of course, I couldn’t go to their level. Not yet. The reason I said “not yet” is because I at least want to reserve some hope that one day I could reach another level. Or like find my own styles. For now, just recognizing the flaws is enough.

So that’s the fun post. More to come in the future, hopefully.

NOTE: This post will be updated from time to write as I add more stories to my blog or finish the current ones.

Golden Bell Awards 2013: Winners

I know, I know. I’m way late with posting up results. But I had to wait until I actually have time or try to squeeze in some watching here and there before I could post this up–instead of just copying and pasting stuff from other sites. Anyway, those of you who have watched or read news know who won. (Go here to read about more exciting updates from the pros! LOL!) Again, like last year, I’m posting results by the order it was announced (except for variety shows, etc).

Best Film Editing – Presenters: Megan Lai and Leroy Yang:
Chen Zhen Guo (陳振國) – 3 Flowers’ Natural Haircut (三朵花純理髮)
Gao Ming Sheng (高鳴晟) – The Busy Young Psychic (神算)
Huang Guan Jun (黃冠鈞) – Record Standpoint – A Rolling Stone (紀錄觀點—築巢人)
Wen Ming Long (溫明龍) – Home (回家)
Fan Qiu Yan (潘秋燕) – The Cursed Mere (陂塘)

Best Cinematography – Presenters: Megan Lai and Leroy Yang:
Li Xue Zhu (李學主) – Discovery – Dajia River (DaAi TV)
Lin Jun Yang (林君陽) – 3 Flowers’ Natural Haircut (三朵花純理髮) (PTS’ Life Story Collection)
Fu Shi Ying (傅士英) – Midsummer Night Prefectural City (仲夏夜府城)
Liao Jing Yao (廖敬堯) – Katang Kids (南風。六堆 喀噠大作戰)
Liu Zhi Yi (劉志益) – MTV Taiwan Documentary (MIT台灣誌)

Best Marketing Program – Presenters: Megan Lai and Leroy Yang:
Two Fathers (2個爸爸) (SETTV)
Falling (含苞欲墜的每一天) (PTS)
Flavor of Life (含笑食堂) (SETTV)
KO One Return (終極一班2) (GTV)
An Innocent Mistake (罪美麗) (TTV)

Best Supporting Actress – Mini-series/ Tele-movies – Presenters: Na Dou (納豆) and Selina Ren:
Mariko Okubo (大久保麻梨子) – Substitute For Love (愛情替聲)
Debbie Yao (姚黛瑋) – Sweet Recipe of Happiness (幸福蜜方) (PTS’ Life Story Collection)
Lu Yi Ching (陸弈靜) – Radiance of Heng Sheng (光明恆生) (DaAi TV)
Huang Cai Yi (黃采儀) – Life Is Shit (臺北八個人) (PTS’ Life Story Collection)
Tan Ai Zhen (譚艾珍) – A Di Zi, Do You Know? (阿弟仔,知道不知道)

Best Lighting:
Wu Ming De (吳明德) – National Treasure In Focus (對焦國寶) (PTS)
Xu Shi Ming (許世明) – The Cursed Mere (陂塘)
Zhuang Hong Yu (莊弘裕) – Sunlight Paradise (日光天堂)
Cheng Wei Zhong (程韋中) – Substitute For Love (愛情替聲
Zhong Qiong Ting (鍾瓊婷) – 3 Flowers’ Natural Haircut (三朵花純理髮)

Best Sound Editing:
Wu Jia Li, Lin Chuan Zhi, Jian Shu Huan, and Huang Shan Liang (吳嘉莉、林傳智、簡淑歡、許勝雄、荒山亮) – Flavor of Life (含笑食堂)
Chen An Ru, Yu Zheng Xian, and Zhang Rong Yi (陳安如、余政憲、張榮倚) – Midsummer Night Prefectural City (仲夏夜府城)
Huang Nian Yong, Zheng Wei Zhi, and Zhang Rong Yi (黃年永、鄭維芝、張榮倚) – Katang Kids (南風。六堆 喀噠大作戰)
Yang Yi Xuan, Shen Sheng De, and Xu Yi Hong (楊以瑄、沈聖德、許一鴻) – The Busy Young Psychic (神算)
Deng Mao Zi, Gao You Feng, Suo Ji Chang, Luo Yi Juan, and Li Ai Xuan (鄧茂茲、高友峰、鎖際昌、羅怡娟、李艾璇) – Traversal 101 (穿越101)

Best Art and Design:
Lin Pei Chen (林沛辰) – An Innocent Mistake (罪美麗)
Ke Qing Mei (柯青每) – Midsummer Night Prefectural City (仲夏夜府城)
Xu Ying Guang and Zhao Shu Yin (許英光、趙舒音) – Home (回家)
Zheng Jia Wei (鄭嘉偉) – Traversal 101 (穿越101)
Lai Yong Kun (賴勇坤) – 3 Flowers’ Natural Haircut (三朵花純理髮)

Best Screenwriter/ Script – Tele-movies – Presenters: Kingone Wang and Jade Chou:
Chen Jia Min (陳佳敏) – The Will to Power (權力過程)
Chen Guan Ting and Huang Jing Zu (陳冠廷、黃靖祖) – The 31st Sign (第三十一首籤)
Huang Ying Min and Lv Deng Gui (黃英珉、呂登貴) – Katang Kids (南風。六堆 喀噠大作戰) (Hakka TV)
Lei Xiao Ci (雷孝慈) – That Day, Mom Came To See Me (那天媽媽來看我)
Liao Shi Han and Shi Hong Ru (廖士涵、施虹如) – Midsummer Night Prefectural City (仲夏夜府城)

Best Supporting Actor – Mini-series/ Tele-movies – Presenters: Kingone Wang and Jade Chou:
Wu Ding Qian (吳定謙) – The 31st Sign (第三十一首籤)
Li Tao (李滔) – A Di Zi, Do You Know? (阿弟仔,知道不知道)
Vince Kao (高英軒) – A Complete Life (双全)
Chen Mu Yi (陳慕義) – The Will to Power (權力過程)
Tang Zhi Wei (湯志偉) – The Will to Power (權力過程)

Best Leading Actress – Min-series/ Tele-movies – Presenters: Kingone Wang and Jade Chou:
Yin Xin (尹馨) – The Will to Power (權力過程)
Bai Bing Bing (白冰冰) – That Day, Mom Came To See Me (那天媽媽來看我)
Zhu Zhi Ying (朱芷瑩) – Sunlight Paradise (日光天堂) (Hakka TV)
Yu Pei Zhen (余佩真) – The Busy Young Psychic (神算) (PTS’ Student Life Story Collection)
Yang Xiao Li (楊小黎) – Substitute For Love (愛情替聲)

Best Director – Mini-series/ Tele-movies – Presenters: Long Shao Hua and Miao Ke Li:
Wang Chuan Zong (王傳宗) – A Di Zi, Do You Know? (阿弟仔,知道不知道)
Zhu Jia Lin (朱家麟) – Traversal 101 (穿越101)
Xin Jian Zong (辛建宗) – Substitute For Love (愛情替聲
Fan Yang Zhong (范揚仲) – The Will to Power (權力過程)
Zeng Xin Ying (曾馨瑩) – The 31st Sign (第三十一首籤)

Best Mini-series/ Tele-movies – Presenters: Long Shao Hua and Miao Ke Li:
PTS’ Life Story Collection – Midsummer Night Prefectural City (仲夏夜府城)
Traversal 101 (穿越101) (PTS)
PTS’ Life Story Collection – The 31st Sign (第三十一首籤)
PTS’ Life Story Collection – Substitute For Love (愛情替聲)
PTS’ Life Story Collection – The Will to Power (權力過程)

Best Leading Actor – Mini-series/ Tele-movies – Presenter: Miao Ke Li:
Tai Bao (太保) – The Best Thing (最好的一件事) (PTS’ Student Life Story Collection)
Wang Mon Ling (王夢麟) – A Di Zi, Do You Know? (阿弟仔,知道不知道) (PTS’ Life Story Collection)
Liang Xiu Shen (梁修身) – The Will to Power (權力過程)
Bi Xiao Hai (畢曉海) – Fresh Meatball (鮮肉餅) (PTS’ Student Life Story Collection)
Long Shao Hua (龍劭華) – La Ba Hong’s Song of Grief and Joy (喇叭宏的悲喜曲) (PTS’ Life Story Collection)

Best Supporting Actor – Drama – Presenters: James Wen and Janel Tsai:
Chen Bo Zheng (陳博正) – Sweet Sweet Bodyguard (剩女保鏢) (SETTV)
Li Li Ren (李李仁) – Home (回家)
Li Chen Xiang (李辰翔) – End of Innocence (死了一個國中生之後)
Lin Zong Ren (林宗仁) – Love in the Wind (你是春風我是雨) (GTV)
Zhang Shao Huai(張少懷) – Falling (含苞欲墜的每一天)

Best Supporting Actress – Drama – Presenters: James Wen and Janel Tsai:
Xiao Xun (小薰) – Love Me Or Leave Me (我租了一個情人) (TTV)
Lv Xue Feng (呂雪鳳) – Flavor of Life (含笑食堂)
Yang Ke Fan (楊可凡) – Flavor of Life (含笑食堂)
Ge Lei (葛蕾) – Home (回家)
Esther Liu (劉品言) – Falling (含苞欲墜的每一天)

Best Screenwriter/ Script – Drama – Presenters: Winnie Qu and Amber Kuo:
Xu Yu Ting, Wu Yi Ran, Xie Bing Xun, He Yao Xian, and Li Wan Rong (徐譽庭、吳怡然、謝秉勳、何曜先、李婉榕) – An Innocent Mistake (罪美麗)
Huang Shi Ming, Liu Wei Ci, Zeng Xian Zhang, and Liu Rui Xuan (黃世鳴、劉瑋慈、曾顯章、劉蕊瑄) – Home (回家)
Huang Yu Jia (黃雨佳) – End of Innocence (死了一個國中生之後)
Ye Dan Qing, Yan Yi Fan, Lin Jia Hui, and Xi Qin (葉丹青、顏一帆、林佳慧、楊靚姝、嬉勤) – Flavor of Life (含笑食堂)
Wen Yu Fang (溫郁芳) – Falling (含苞欲墜的每一天)

Best Director – Drama – Presenters: Winnie Qu and Amber Kuo:
Wang Ming Tai (王明台) – Falling (含苞欲墜的每一天)
Lin Zi Ping (林子平) – Home (回家)
Zhang Jin Rong (張晉榮) – The Cursed Mere (陂塘) (Hakka TV)
Ye Tian Lun (葉天倫) – Flavor of Life (含笑食堂)
You Zhi Wei, Gao Bing Quan, Guo Chun Hui, and Zhang Jia Xian (游智煒、高炳權、郭春暉、張佳賢) – The Late Night Shop (小站)

Best Leading Actress – Drama – Presenters: Tia Li and Puff Guo:
Ding Ye Tian (丁也恬) – My Summer Adventure (阿婆的夏令營) (Hakka TV)
Jade Chou (周幼婷) – Falling (含苞欲墜的每一天)
Lin Chen Xi (林辰唏) – An Innocent Mistake (罪美麗)
Miao Ke Li (苗可麗) – Flavor of Life (含笑食堂)
Nikki Hsieh (謝欣穎) – Die Sterntaler (白色之戀) (CTV)

Best Leading Actor – Drama – Presenters: Chen Bo Lin and Sonia Sui:
Vic Chou (周渝民) – Home (回家)
Lin Jia Wei (林嘉瑋) – End of Innocence (死了一個國中生之後)
Morning Mo (莫子儀) – An Innocent Mistake (罪美麗)
Jag Huang (黃健瑋) – Falling (含苞欲墜的每一天)
Long Shao Hua (龍劭華) – Flavor of Life (含笑食堂)

Best Dramas – Presenters: Chen Bo Lin and Sonia Sui:
Home (回家) (CTS)
Falling (含苞欲墜的每一天) (PTS)
Flavor of Life (含笑食堂) (SETTV)
End of Innocence (死了一個國中生之後) (Hakka TV)
An Innocent Mistake (罪美麗) (TTV)

Wow! Congrats to all winners! It was fun to watch. But what I enjoyed was the unpredictable winners versus last year’s repetitive trends. I’m not acting like a sore loser about last year. But I felt this year have more variety with winners versus last year’s one take all so it was a bit boring on that front.

*All information were translated and verified by DTLCT.

Fan Fiction: When Plot Gets Changed

Okay, so since I couldn’t get my brain cells to work properly to finish some much needed to finish fanfics, I decided to roll out this activity where I confess about changing my mind and ideas get tossed around. I’m sure it happens to most writers.

NOTE: The following contains spoilers (obviously from the title), SO if you haven’t read my stories yet, DO NOT proceed.

+ Destiny + – At one point, I got so stuck on it that I ended up going the ‘morbid’ route for the middle parts of the story. That wasn’t supposed to happen since it was just a funny story in general.

Heaven’s Gift – Hebe’s twin was a last-minute addition yet I thought it was fun to include it.

Slanted Thoughts – Wallace replaced Ming Dao. I only wrote the first scene (aka the part where he was walking around monitoring his employees) before I replaced Ming Dao with Wallace so it wasn’t too much of a loss. Why did I replace Ming Dao though? I somehow fell out of the trance of ‘obsessing over Ming Dao’ so yeah, Mr. Huo once again returned to save the day, lol. What was more, Wallace/Ming Dao was supposed to end up with Angela and Nic with Cyndi. Then I got into somewhat a “Jindi” phase at one point hence breaking Nic and Cyndi apart. AND also because someone drove me bananas with kept implying that Nic couldn’t measure up to Cyndi (OR something like that) hence I broke them apart AND added Yvonne and Tammy, they ended up taking bigger roles. (NO one makes fun of Nic and gets away with it. I don’t care if you’re kidding, keep nagging about it and it would become SUPER annoying.) What about Wallace and Angela? I don’t know. I got into obsessing over Wallace and Yvonne at one point so I sacrificed Angela, lol.

Slanted Thoughts 2: Edge of Darkness – This part wasn’t supposed to happen. But I couldn’t resist when I finally added in Yvonne and Tammy for part 1.

Slicing Boundary – Cynthia wasn’t supposed to die.

The Dating Game – Ehlo was supposed to end up with Wei Ru BUT I was writing “When Wishes Come True” at the same time and even finished that before I went back to this hence changing the ending slightly the first time around. Also, some might have known, I changed the details regarding Ming Dao and Qiao Qiao. Scroll up and it’s there regarding how I got over Ming Dao already. (NOT to mention some fanbase were pissing me off with attacking Qiao Qiao.) Though the thing was I had planned it out with Chen Yi and Qiao Qiao ending up together if I hadn’t implemented the whole ‘voting’ activity when I first posted it on Winglin. Yet when I finally changed the ending again, I didn’t want to break Chen Yi and XXY up because I grew to like this new pairing as I write. Oh yeah, Ming Dao was supposed to end up with Bianca when I first write it. But again, the ‘voting’ thing so after that, I had to shuffle the pairings around. Angela was supposed to end up with Johnny or Wallace or stay single and be a career woman; that also meant if Johnny didn’t end up with Angela he would be single till the end but things totally changed as I wrote the story because my mood was obviously different at various points. Also, at one point, I remembered Ming Dao’s character in Angel Lover, Yang Tian You, said that he would introduce Bianca’s character, Li Xi Ai, to Johnny Yan so I went with that. The connection was easy to make around the time when the votes already locked in because I already paved out the detail with some characters reading the same book. Talking about Mr. Huo, he was either ending up with Angela or Cyndi. There was NO Penny when I put the list up, but someone had requested the “Wallace and Penny” pairing. I added it in and planned to see how fun it could get, but couldn’t make it happen. (Hey, I never promised it would happen so it wasn’t like I was going back on my words.) No Gino either but since I shuffled so had to pair Wei Ru with someone. (Since she did look quite cute with Gino in Smile Pasta.) Tony and Esther weren’t supposed to be together, I set their ages like that on purpose but again, the voting thing got in the way. It shows that it’s really unpredictable when there’s ‘voting’ involved. It was a fun experience for me and I learned I wasn’t cut out for it.

The Dating 2: A Whole New Game – I kind of fell out of the obsession with “Vincent and Alyssa” though they’re still one of my favorite pairings so Tang Feng came into the picture.

The Dating Game 3: Original Course – Jacky and Sonia weren’t supposed to break up. Same with Wallace and Cyndi. I just got bored. And there was the whole idea with me shifting toward James Wen and Sonia that made it convenient to change the plot, lol. Sorry if people were tearing their hairs out. It was just a happy accident that the title was “The Dating Game” in the first place SO I got away with shuffling around.

The Dating Game 4: Bridge of Hope – Tang Feng wasn’t supposed to die. I got bored. YES, I so could sympathize with TVB people now, LOL! I also got bored with Tony and Esther so yeah. But who knows? I might let them have a reunion later. NO guarantee though. Jiro was supposed to be “Josh”, but since I let Cyndi portray a not so likable character, I felt I couldn’t get away with making Jiro too stupid. SO yeah, I changed that part. And I felt like seeking revenge for Tang Feng when he was placed as the despicable, irresponsible older brother in HWG SO YES, I placed his so-called sister on the platter this time around. Nice?

The Other Extreme – Jacky wasn’t supposed to die, Cyndi and Sharon were. But I ended up twisted it around a bit. And at one point, I even thought of letting Jindi die together. But that felt like “Romeo & Juliet” formula SO I didn’t do that.

True Friendship – I initially wanted to write 3 endings and have a ‘voting’ activity with letting the readers decide in regard to who Xiao Qiao should end up with. But time changed things and I didn’t want to complicate things even more. The story, like “+Destiny+” ended up being placed aside for a while. It was just that I started posting it when I was almost done. Yet somehow, I was glad I was stuck and managed to steer the direction of the story a bit more. Because the ending was supposed to be Jacky proposing to Joanne and Derek proposing to Joyce at that same picnic, but on their own–until they join the group again and break the news. It felt so lame now. I rather have the current ending because life wasn’t just about focusing on the major characters. It was refreshing to me.

Wan Xin Bang – Though it’s no longer there in the links and all, I will bring it back in the future. This is the ancient version of “M.I.T./C.R.A.” and somehow I changed some cast and details. As I’m continuing on right now, I’m thinking of switching out some cast again.

Winds & Rain – It was supposed to be longer but I got stuck so I rolled it out as a short story anyway.

So, what are your changes?

NOTE: More will be added in the future

The GBA Aftermath

Okay, I wasn’t even going to participate in this ridiculous, beyond childish “game” this year. Yet I had to after reading some things. I refrained from wanting to even blog or care about it after reading some news (which was my first mistake in a long time now because I had cut myself off with anything that’s related to the stretch of the media and anti-fans) last night. But I could no longer hold out after reading an exchange between Will and Mark:

(Image Credit: Will’s Weibo)

YES, it got to Will. In this day and age and leave it up to the media to add in more oil to the blazing fire, OF COURSE, IT GOT TO HIM. Thank you for those who were making things even worse. I hope you all are happy now! (YES, that was sarcasm.) Now that I got that part out of the way, I will attempt to tear everything apart one by one and beat the already “dead horse” to death again (IF POSSIBLE). These points were influenced by a collection of various discussions around the net BUT might not cover everything because I stopped reading for the sake of keeping whatever of sanity is left in me. Luckily, Will didn’t get beat down yet and will continue to strive forward.

First and foremost, who should have won? Everyone loves this question, right? Since most people (or what seems like it) have been yelling out injustice since the result was announced. Biased or unbiased, I think Will deserved every ounce of the award–regardless if the other nominees are veterans or not. Well, it’s easy for me to say because I’m some obsessed fangirl, right? WRONG, I thought James Wen would win this year–finally. Does that mean I have no faith in Will? NO, it was because Endless Love was too underrated AND the fact that the hype was built around The Fierce Wife and many others all along.

Additional reasons?

  • Picking on the new guy is just so fun. People are so against Will because he’s new. Technically, he isn’t new anymore in the industry, but at least he’s one of the new nominees and some people wouldn’t expect to show up on the list. It’s the same reason why Mark got bombarded to the point that it could be compared to a massacre two years ago. AND also the mockery that followed after Show got beat by Wu Cheng Di. I just want to say that when it comes to these things, it’s not a matter of who’s senior/junior but it should be based on that one performance only. That’s why they attached the title of the drama after reading out the nominees’ name, hence the next point.
  • Acting? The obvious reason for thinking his acting isn’t up to it. Those who think so based on Miss No Good and never watched Endless Love should not even have a say in it. After all, the award was based on his performance in Endless Love. Endless Love received some attention when it first aired–yet for all the wrong reasons (thanks to the media), but that was it. So it was hard for those who lost interest and never watched the rest of it to criticize Will’s acting. He had improved heaps since Miss No Good–if that was possible. Not to mention how with people’s first major lead role, they would end up all nervous. (AND because he and Rainie are really good friends outside, too familiar with one another that made him nervous and less natural in Miss No Good than in Endless Love.)
  • Fanbase and the personal support team. This is important because this is where everyone gets overly emotional because of course, they would be supporting their friends, favorites, etc. YET if they’re unwilling to step back and analyze the whole situation, it’s just group-bullying the winner in the end. Even more so, just because someone you support wins it means it’s fair? And if someone you don’t support wins, that means the whole thing is corrupted? More on that later.
  • Different interpretation of what ‘good acting’ is. YES, this is why sometimes we have a room full of people and they can’t seem to get along. We all have a different perception of what good acting is. SO the people on the panel are like that as well. Ever heard the phrase “9 people with 10 opinions”? (I’ll leave some other questions about doubt for later as well.)

Who handled the outcome better? Of course, it’s easy to be happy and all when you’re winning, right? YES, but Will had to deal with the combined pressure from the other nominees–and their supporters, the media, and the audience. This is one of those rare times when he rather not win. Being the winner is worse than being the loser this time around. But I must say that out of all the other nominees, Jin Shi Jie handled it pretty well, even congratulating Will based on this post. I’m not sure about Long Shao Hua since I haven’t heard much about him afterward–or the media focused less on him. NOT sure. Joseph Chang looked sad from some of the photos captured afterward–with Rainie comforting him–AND he has every right to be. Yet the most disappointing reaction must be from James Wen. He has every right–like the other nominees–to be upset yet calling injustice? Okay, here is the part where everyone would be arguing about there’s never a wrong way to react after losing since it’s hard to control one’s emotion and how it hurts to lose four times already. YET why didn’t he react so strongly before? (Okay, people are rolling their eyes and saying, “Maybe it’s because this is the fourth time.” How could I miss it when I wrote “four times” up there, right?) Lei Hong won in 2008–and no reaction just because he’s a veteran? Or was it because it was the second time (after some years) so no real effect yet (but just the whole flaunting around about “being honored with having the nomination”)? My turn to roll my eyes here. But if Eddie Peng had won over him that year, how would he feel? (Though if Eddie had won, I wouldn’t mind either because I felt his performance in Wayward Kenting was so convincing as some clueless guy. But for the record, I was rooting for Zhang Chen Guang also SO I wasn’t too happy with Lei Hong winning YET I got over it. YES, I said it that I didn’t agree with the winner BUT I wouldn’t go about bashing another for it. I just moved on.) Then come last year’s The Happy Times of That Year and he didn’t win either AND what was his reaction? Sorry that I have forgotten but most of the heat was on between the winner and Show Luo–or so it seemed. AND is this year an appropriate time to come out pondering if the audience could vote as well? (I get it the part about him being sad and disappointed that he doesn’t know where he went wrong. YET I didn’t like some of the attitude going on like he was sure he would win. No one wants to lose OR so others would be arguing right now, but he has let the whole hype get to him and building himself up too much hence not being able to accept the outcome–like some others who have taken it lightly. I’m sure it’s hard not to get pulled in because of how much The Fierce Wife Team has built itself up for getting awards, but he must understand that acting is not about awards only. Or was that his goal all along? And IF anyone wants to pull the veteran card out now, he has to understand how the industry is since he has been around for a while now.) Back to the whole questioning about the panel, he could question the panel all he wants but touching the audience? Nice move. This goes back to prove that everyone has a different opinion on how and what is good acting. YET what is he implying? (I’m sure the media could be twisting his word, but some of the reactions from him and the rest of The Fierce Wife Team are obvious already without the media adding in more.) Talking about TFW (The Fierce Wife) Team, Sonia sure disappointed me with her reaction as well. (YES, this is the part where people are saying about how it’s natural for her to not be able to control emotion because she just lost the leading actress award to Tian Xin previously–and that she was just supporting James–AND how she already apologized afterward via Facebook. YET Miss Sui was saying in this one article that she didn’t care about winning and seemed like she was taking it easy. She must have underestimated herself and reacted differently when the moment finally came and she couldn’t predict that YET it proved that the response was just a publicity stunt after all. And if what she said before had been taken out of context with her not caring about the award and she had clarified about that–aka she does care, then I’m sorry. But that was kind of not so graceful with her reaction–regardless of how much damage control was done afterward. It had allowed for the TFW fanbase to bash others since it was okay their idols were against a certain victory as well. Yeah, here comes the whole “idols couldn’t control their emotions” again, BUT they’re NOT new. People want to use the “veteran/senior card” to their advantage? I will use it too if you want to play that way.)

SIDE-NOTE: I want to stop here and clarify that I really like both Sonia and James Wen. I liked Sonia since watching The Magicians of Love–even if people thought her performance wasn’t all that, but I saw the potential in her. (NOT to mention how I have included her as one of the key characters in The Dating Game series of my fanfiction–regardless of how lame and random the story-line tend to get.) James? I only watched him in bits and pieces in The Happy Times of That Year but really liked his chemistry with Sonia in there, and loved them as an on-screen couple since then. Not to mention how I think James could really act. Yet I’m just disappointed in their reaction of recent, that’s all. SO if anyone thinks it’s just my cheap attempt to defend Will by dunking both James and Sonia, that’s fine and I can’t stop you, but it’s not the truth. I will continue to support both and wish their time will come in the future. I also hope that they would both learn to handle situations better as well. (NOT to mention the whole ‘TFW Team’ also.)

Moving on…to the next point.

The results were fixed. This couldn’t be helped when an award ceremony comes around–or some sort of competition. I read somewhere that someone was mentioning about Angie Cai (the producer of Endless Love) was behind the whole thing with getting Will to win. Honestly? Someone also pointed out through the same post that: “Why couldn’t she do the same last year for Show and Hai Pai Tian Xin?” I must agree with that response. Don’t tell me because she learned better this year. Unless you can prove it, don’t even go there. It does happen in the industry at times and who knows what else behind those curtains YET unless you can prove it, it’s just a bunch of baseless assumptions. To make it even worse, someone else blurted out that Will was actually the one buying himself the award. Again, honestly? This, I could say is impossible without proof. Why? He focuses his career on music because that’s his passion, but does one drama per year (or so he had announced one time) because of fans who would want to see him in the dramas. He’s known to be one of the most extreme workaholics in the industry, never stopping even when he injured his leg performing that one time onstage. Would he resort to that method to win?

Why didn’t I defend Mark when everyone and their cousins were after him for winning two years ago? The obvious: I didn’t watch Black & White yet and could only read the news that was surrounding the matter. A lame answer to dodge out of the sticky situation, but it’s the truth. I wouldn’t want to be talking about a subject that I have no idea about because it would end up worthless when I need to back up my argument. Have you ever sit there and listen to some friends talk about a certain popular movie recently shown in the theater and they talked it to death YET you have no idea what it’s about? But you ended up pretending you do AND they cornered you with a question regarding the plot or trap you with some questions about the cast (how did you think so and so did)? The sad outcome would be they made some stuff up to test you yet you didn’t even realize it until they told you in the end, making you look like an idiot because they knew all along you were bluffing (and just want to teach you a lesson). SO, yes I didn’t want to be that idiot. Though I never agree with people targeting others, even resorting to name-calling, etc. SO now that I already watched Black & White, how about not dodging the question anymore? Did Mark deserve the win? Honestly, I think he did. I pondered about it a lot when I was watching Black & White–and if I had to go raw without any real first-hand information, I would be too blinded and biased to answer that question. But I was glad to hold my judgment while I was watching. It seemed like a slow start with Mark’s character–though there was some excitement with the cases and the chase scenes at various points. Yet there were more actions than scenes where it allowed Mark to show off his ability to express his emotions. But somewhere near the ending when the plot focused on revealing more of Ying Xiong’s identity and the trap he fell into, Mark got more chances to prove his talent. It was indeed fascinating to watch. It wasn’t Mark’s fault that there were less emotional scenes for him. It was the way the plot was built. It was just that Pi Zi had a harsh life and the ups and downs of the stuff he went through were ten times worse hence allowing Vic more chances to prove his abilities. I’m not saying that Vic doesn’t deserve it SO don’t put words into my mouth. But I’m saying that other elements must be considered before jumping to a conclusion about who deserves it more than whom. I think either one of the guys winning would already be a victory for the drama itself.

Who got it worse–Mark or Will? YES, I had to address it too. During the commotion and the announcement of the result, Mark must have gotten it worse. Though both were equally shocked and emotional to pay attention to other sideshows. Yet I think Mark got it worse after the acceptance/appreciative speech and the after-party. Just because he was right there witnessing everything. People must be whispering and some doubts are out there–thanks to the media’s interpretation as well. Mark saw it all and had to endure the whole night. Will was in China performing and was watching it on TV. Just to get some things cleared out of the way before people assume otherwise, Will had agreed to perform in China first and did not want to cancel the show just because of the award show. Some people had interpreted that he didn’t show up because he knew he wouldn’t win (possibly thanks to the media again). That might be true to some extent, BUT I think it wouldn’t be a stretch to say that he didn’t want to disappoint the people who were coming to see his performance with the show in China (since he had been known to be quite considerate and always work his best with preparations for the shows). If he didn’t care, he wouldn’t even watch, right? Of course, he was beyond surprised that he won and even went into extremely shocked mode after learning that he won. (It could be seen in this clip that he included after thanking the cast and crew of Endless Love because he said the award did not belong to him only, but to them also.) To get back to the point in bold again, I think it’s about the same after the show was over and the media begin weaving stories–and the audience’s reaction. And I don’t think there would be anyone who could comfort Will better than Mark since Mark really, truly understand EXACTLY what Will is going through (like both had said in that message above).

So after all those rants from me, who should be blamed then? (YES, I know we must blame someone for our frustration, right? SO, of course, I got that part covered.) The most obvious answer: GBA panel aka the judges. It was them who determined the winner. Whatever it was said and done, it was up to them. They were the ones who people should be targeting–regardless of what you assumed happened behind the scenes. But it’s natural to blame the winners because we couldn’t change anything or have a say in the panel, right? NO! Come on now, could someone come up with a lamer reason to hate? To get back to the subject again, if the nominees don’t trust the panel OR care for the GBA, why didn’t they just file some report/statement stating that they DO NOT want to be involved in it altogether? Oh, we’re back to the whole “I thought I would win thing again.” Scroll up and it goes in circles. LOL!

To get way off-topic but still somewhat on topic, did anyone consider that some of the best dramas of the year didn’t even get mentioned? SO how could you rate the fairness of everything or feel the injustice of it all? I’m sure every one of the production team of all the dramas aired last year (and all of the years in the past, in the current, and in the future as well) did their best and put in a lot to work to create all of those dramas for us to see–regardless if we care for the genre or not, BUT they didn’t get mentioned. What I’m getting at is if you complain about those not winning, what about those who didn’t get nominated? The list goes on and on, not just the cast–or the usual upfront producer/director teams either. But the people who spent hours to put up the set and get the scenes ready for the shoot. Or say those people who spent hours after to clean up after the others are done with the scenes and already went home? Do they ever get mentioned? We know they exist, but the attention’s always on the forerunners. SO imagine how they feel when they are not mentioned at all. OR like some people thought they could carry on a show without the help of the so-called “little people.”

Am I trying to act all mighty and teach people stuff? NO, I’m just fed up with seeing so much negativity and what one human being would do to another just because of something they couldn’t change. You might think I’m making too big of a deal out of this because they’re entertainers. BUT does that mean entertainers DO NOT have feelings or deserve to pursue their dreams or follow their ambition? Every one of us has a dream or a goal we’re working toward. You might think one is silly or another. You might choose to be a doctor because you want to save lives, others could choose to become singers/song-writers/actors–or whatever you name it. But it doesn’t make one career/profession more superior than the other. We’re just all different from one another and the path we choose makes this world a place with variety.

This was a rant about the male side mostly since it has to do with Will and all. Yet I think it could apply for all of the categories that were mentioned in the award as well. Because honestly, it doesn’t make much of a difference. The bottom-line: Get over it.

Black & White

Okay, I finally watched it after much-failed attempts. I had to hunt down the Viet-dubbed version so I could watch it with my mom. (LOL!)

First things, the starring cast:

  • Vic Chou as Chen Zai Tian aka Pi Zi. Hilarious! A totally different role for Vic aside from his other morbid roles or borderline of morbid? I actually really enjoyed his role despite his character’s loud-mouth at times. Typical good guy with a smart mouth that could make others hate him, BUT I honestly didn’t. He made it so funny that it was hard to hate him. There were also serious scenes worth mentioning, quite emotional. But to be fair (since I picked on Ivy/Chen Lin too), I had no idea what his character was up to at times. Perhaps, it was the effects of his mysterious nature and not really sure if he was indeed the mole OR some other characters with an alternative aside from the surface with his laid back nature. I swear! He made it so suspicious that it got my nerves since I was so scared they did this approach–IF that was the case. But I have to credit Vic for pulling it quite well with deceiving us. And should I say it was really nerve-racking waiting for his real identity to reveal? Sure was intriguing all right. There were so much going on with the twists and turns that I felt among all in here, he was the most pitiful because everything he thought he had and was supposedly be real was not. BUT somehow he got through all of that. I’m so going to miss him in the movie sequel.
  • Mark Chao as Wu Ying Xiong. Okay, it was getting really creepy when I was trying to watch the Mandarin version because his voice sounded really like Sam Wang SO after hunting down the Viet-dubbed version, it eliminated the little distraction. Mark sure had to run a lot in here! He got to do a lot of cool stunts. Darn! I’m not sure what to say about the character really since I’m not really into the ‘hot-headed’ characters as much BUT I guess I do understand his righteous nature. (I prefer the quiet, observant type more SO it’s not like I’m siding with Vic’s character to pick on him. But I guess it’s part of the chemistry with the whole Pi Zi Yi Xiong SO Ying Xiong just have to be the hot-headed, serious one while leaving the comedy part to Pi Zi.) One thing I have to give him credit for was not caving into Chen Lin’s temptation and crossing the line. I meant okay, he liked her but he wasn’t obsessed to the point of helping her blindly, etc. He wanted to do everything the right way, not wanting to change his principle for a girl, etc. But somehow, it was a bit ironic to fall for Mu Sha’s schemes later. I guess it was understandable since they had a past and he thought she really liked him. (AND she really did later.)
  • Ivy Chen as Chen Lin. I don’t know. It was very, very hard to get into her character though I realized how cool her character could be with being able to kick ass at times too. YET I think it might be Ivy. NO, not picking on the newbie since she wasn’t a newbie technically (since she appeared in various dramas before). Perhaps it was harder to see her cute side at times or her attempted cute scenes. Oh yeah, what was even harder was seeing how her character development was going downhill after the initial kick-ass scenes at the beginning with her slamming Pi Zi/Vic at their first meeting–and then those other scenes where she fought the other guys. It gradually passed but the dragging with the relationships was killing me–or more like my patience. After all, I wasn’t so sure if it was Ivy or the character development that made it more confusing to sympathize with. SO it was colorful and interesting in its own right, but like I said before, the character totally went downhill or somewhat got side-track. Conclusion: The scriptwriters killed her character major time by trying to make it complex YET failed miserably. AND oh yeah, Chen Lin’s other crime was being mad and bossy toward Xiao Ma. (What the heck was that telling him to report to her when he found more info? That was the scene near the end where her father was kidnapped.)
  • Janine Chang as Lan Xi Ying. I actually liked her character. And how she portrayed it. A passive character yet not too passive because she only talked or acted whenever she needed to. And like I mentioned above, I usually like the observant type SO she fitted my type of favorite more. (Even if this was a male character instead of female, I still pick a character like her.) I was pondering if she was the mole at times too. I swear! Even if it made it like she was framed. NOT because that one dude made it like that was her who faked everything, but I suspected her before that. Or maybe I liked her character too much so I was afraid she might be the mole. The mole was usually the quiet ones who were being helpful and quiet (so as not to draw attention) so that was why I thought it was her at first. There was also the whole idea of her being used by the others to get information with Pi Zi’s fingerprints, etc. It was too frustrating. Like driving me insane. But I guess because she really thought those superiors were working for the good. Still, her trusting nature was too much–and I guess she had to pay for it later. The near ending scene was cool though since it was unexpected that she knew how to shoot like that. I guess it was really one of those life-threatening things and the opportunity presented itself (aka there was a gun available) versus past times when she did not have anything to fight back with.

Notable performances:

  • Kingone Wang as Gao Yi. I didn’t care if he only appeared in the first few episodes. His performance was still worth mentioning. He really convinced me with his portrayal as the psycho who unleashed the drug ‘Dreamer’ and wanting to take everyone to ‘Heaven’ as he claimed. It was creepy and it wasn’t just because of how the make-up team did a great job with the image, but his crazy behaviors throughout.
  • Paul Chun as Lao Tou. Honestly, love Paul. He never lost it! Never failed to deliver regardless of how long he appeared. This is called professionalism. This is called the love of acting. A great veteran actor as always. Love the parts where he appeared.
  • Xiu Jie Kai as Ma Xiao Ming aka Huang Shi Kai aka Q. His intro scene was hilarious! Come on now, no one would know he was some shooter, LOL! Maybe that was the whole point, appearing least suspicious as possible. His boyish aura really blocked the whole threatening vibe at times. I meant like how he was acting so innocent when they were talking to him when he was at his hotdog stand BUT he seemed so much scarier when he was out and about, lurking in the dark, etc. Oh yeah, I especially liked the stunts created for his character, like the part where he did the backflip to try and get out of Ying Xiong’s grasp. So slick! Another scene was when he was rescuing Chen Lin from BOSS and group. He was just so awesome–without even trying. So what if he got shot later? His character was just so awesome. (TO ME.)
  • Sonia Sui as Lei Mu Sha. OMG! She was so scary. She creeped the world out of me with her technique. It wasn’t just being a beautiful agent. It was her menacing looks and actions that made it so chilling. And I never doubted the emotional scenes she had with Mark the other times. A character bordering on the edge, not sure if we should hate her or pity her.

Why didn’t I list the main cast? Um…hey, they were the main cast. They got to be the main cast, so I don’t think I need to say much more. Mark also won ‘Best Actor’ and also got recognized so I think that should already say something. If I say more toward or against it, it would end up being either I’m sucking up to him OR I’m being a sore loser (aka rooting for someone else). SO playing safe to only talk about the supporting cast and/or guest stars.

Surprises:

  • Allen Chao as South District Director. I didn’t doubt his acting–ever. But thanks to my mom, I finally remembered why he looked sooo familiar. He used to be in those Bao Qing Tian ones, BUT I stopped watching TW stuff for a while so it didn’t catch on with me. It wasn’t surprising that he was the mole though. ‘Cause honestly, he had too much power and the way things kept happening around them. Not to mention even the North District Director was involved. It would make sense that he was involved too.
  • Xiao Lu was the mole. Eh…this was definitely something shocking. I kept suspecting Xi Ying at times, lol. BUT it made sense since Xiao Lu kept playing the role of an innocent and cute girl. And how she kept insisting on helping them, but it was just her way of asking questions and/or extracting for information in her own way.

Worth-mentioning scenes:

  • The part where Mark was climbing on the train, trying to get inside. Whoa, sure lived up to the hype of the action.
  • The part where Mark and Kingone had their fight on the train. Another intense scene. Kudos to the production team.
  • Vic tried to talk Kingone into surrendering. Then Kingone turned around and shot Mark BUT Vic shot him (Kingone) in time so Mark was able to arrest Kingone. Sort of a hint of possible collaboration for the future. BUT of course, Pi Zi had to run his mouth and ruin the bond again. That was probably for the intended formula of the show creators though.
  • Vic running after Reen when he spotted her in the bar. Emotional scene though not sure what was going on yet.
  • Vic mourning for Reen’s death. This was after the explosion. That was worth a lot of points. It was devastating and traumatizing rolled into one. (IF only someone would stop appearing and yakking too much. Lucky he escaped and mourned on his own again.) I totally felt it and almost cried with him. (ALMOST…) Then those scenes in between with his devastated state, browsing through the streets mindlessly. AND okay, I did cry at the part where Ying Xiong finally confronted Zai Tian after having found him already–all beaten up. I think only Ying Xiong had the right to yell at Zai Tian though. ‘Cause I was a tad confused if Chen Lin was addressing him as a friend or a jealous girl. Though what she said was right to an extent, I kept having a feeling she was just jealous of Xiao Mei with her implication of saying that Xiao Mei was ‘just some girl’. Too sour to even sound like a friend. But the most touching part must be where Ying Xiong finally hugged Zai Tian and comfort him and how Zai Tian finally cried out. One of the classic phrases must be the part where Pi Zi said, “None of these are real, only she is.” (Referring to his past and current identities.)
  • The part where Vic was confronting Paul regarding his identities. Totally worth a lot of points. Should I even say more about Paul’s acting? (Guess not.) But Vic was really good during the scene. I especially liked the lines used in this part too. (Kudos to the scriptwriters of course.) What if he rather lived the life that he had earlier? He still wanted the choice to be made by him, not controlled by others.
  • The part where Vic was confiding with Janine regarding his feelings of losing a family member (aka Xiao Mei). A really touching scene though it seemed so, so subtle but worth a lot of tears. She didn’t just say those comforting words about “don’t be sad” or those lame phrases. She just shared with him the time she lost her father. And the stories really tied in with one another. It made him realized they were indeed going through the same feelings. Though her father passed away ages ago, that did not mean it would fade away.
  • The part where Vic found Janine and carried her into the hospital and its following parts. Another touching scene. He couldn’t believe she went through so much for him. NOT because she had an alternative motive, but because she knew what was like to want to find out the truth, i.e. like her father’s case.
  • The part where Vic and Ivy found out they were siblings. Well, sorry to say but I never cheered any louder. Just because I didn’t have to see Vic and Ivy together anymore. It was really sad for Zai Tian since he was suddenly tortured in between being a cop, being abandoned and suddenly having a father–and a sister. Too much to take in. And how he had to choose between being a cop and going with his gangster father.
  • The part where Mark confronted Vic with crossing the line. It was hilarious yet sad at the same time since Zai Tian said how lucky Ying Xiong was, etc. Ying Xiong had no idea how Zai Tian had to choose and all the conflicts.
  • The part where Vic said his subtle goodbye to Janine in the lab. I don’t know. Every time seeing their interaction was just so touching and meaningful. Not many words were exchanged but the feeling was so genuine.
  • The part where Mark confronted Vic on the bridge. Ying Xiong had no idea. Zai Tian finally revealed his identity as Lao Tou’s son. What a shocking one for Ying Xiong really. And the hallmark of the scene was how Ying Xiong told Zai Tian to beat him. He really didn’t want to let them go yet with family, it was so hard. I finally could see the bond between the two. A genuine friendship. I was glad it took that for Ying Xiong to cave in and NOT because Chen Lin begged.
  • Mark drinking at the bar and mumbling away incoherently. Subtle, short, but said a lot.
  • Vic and Mark’s talk at Mark’s car. It was so meaningful yet not too serious. Zai Tian actually asked about Ying Xiong’s well-being with being demoted again, NOT like someone who only cared about whether she had a brother or not. (LAME!) Anyway, it seemed like their interaction was smoother than the past. I was getting more addicted to watching them–mostly as a team.
  • The part that Vic and Mark were talking in the parking lot after Mark got kicked off the force. Another scene where they were bonding. Ying Xiong could feel the irony of the situation since he always thought Pi Zi would be the one who got kicked off first, considering how he was always not serious about his work, being careless, etc. Then Pi Zi vouched that he would hunt down ‘that woman Lei Mu Sha’ and make her pay. That was really touching. It showed their bond had gone up another level. Beyond just being partners aka on the same team. But it was about being friends.
  • The part where Vic found out he wasn’t really Paul’s son AND that his world was turning upside down again. Another worth mentioning scene. Could Vic get any better than that? (Yeah, I was just amazed since this was just my second time watching his series SO…) The scene was indeed very emotional. From having a family to losing it all again. False hope was the worst of it all.
  • The part where Vic was walking along the streets and remembering about the past. I totally felt that one though there were no tears, not really. Just anger and frustration. From having a mother to seeing her pass away. From not having anything to having. Then from thinking he found his family again YET it was all one big mistake. The world tumbling down all on him at once. The world was becoming confusing again. Yet it was possibly because he was so numbed now that he no longer could cry? Just frustrated–which he had every right to. Though he benefited from all the luxury all these years, his emotional state had been so badly damaged.
  • The part where Vic made the decision to pull the electricity wire together so Ivy could open the door to save Mark. I didn’t care about her reactions since it distracted my observation of the guys’ bonding. Yet it was really something seeing Pi Zi making such a huge decision in risking his life like that. The admittance with Pi Zi afterward of losing everything was really something also. What I really liked about the whole thing was seeing how Pi Zi admitted his wrong (though it was because he was hurting) and even apologized to Ying Xiong for betraying him (Ying Xiong)–previously. Then the conversation between how Ying Xiong was asking about their mother. Indeed, they were brothers in a way.
  • The part where Sonia died. I must be crazy to even cry but seriously, it was that tragic. All the things she did wasn’t even forgivable. Yet what she said at the end was really something, which was: “I never got to choose, but now I get to choose not to kill you.”
  • The part where Mark was talking on the phone with Vic after Sonia’s death. That was really something. And yes, finally Ying Xiong was breaking through, giving up hope about uncovering the truth. An emotional scene indeed. We often saw Pi Zi breaking down a lot more than Ying Xiong but I guess Mu Sha’s death was the ultimate breakdown for him. The only person who loved him (aside from his mother) and left him just like that.
  • The part where Vic and Janine were hugging each other goodbye. Well, it was more like Xi Ying was hugging him instead of him initiating it, but it was so genuine between them. Man, I never waited for anything longer than that. Seriously, it’s mega-cute despite the situation. I was also glad they didn’t exchange those “I love you” or anything OR it would be too fake or too much. Since I knew that they were relying on each other for support and understanding because of similar situations they went through. I didn’t mind at all if they had hugged all night. LOL! But that would be unrealistic though.
  • The last battle. Totally worth the wait though I didn’t like the dragging parts in the middle. Honestly, it was too exciting! Xiao Ma’s opening scene with the battles. Then later Pi Zi scenes–of course! How could he be so careless as to get shot down so quick? Awww…I was looking forward to some awesome scenes BUT he got up again and saved Ying Xiong so I guess that should make up for it, LOL! But still, the following parts of the fight with the three guys and then the battle with BOSS made up for it all. Those scenes were awesome! Pi Zi still found time to be funny? LOL!
  • The part where Vic realized Reen wasn’t dead yet. Man, only flashback images could capture the scenes. And they did it really nice. Imagine the shock. Imagine the last piece of his life he thought that was genuine also being part of the fake picture as well.
  • The chase! Yeah, the one on the boat. But I swear it reminded me of Tokyo Raiders so much. Still cool though. Hahaha! Pi Zi was killing me with his taunting and his shooting method! LOL! And their arguments were present again.

NOT COOL:

  • Ying Xiong didn’t bother clarifying that it was actually Zai Tian who carried Chen Lin on his back on the train scene. WHAT?! Okay, I rather see Mark and Ivy together since I was sort of rooting for Vic and Janine. BUT seriously? Why didn’t Ying Xiong clear it up with Chen Lin when she asked him? (So he cleared it up later but that was when he was so mad he didn’t care about pleasing her anymore. Still…LATE!)
  • Ying Xiong let Xi Ying edge out of the get together awkward moment on her own outside the bar. SO Ying Xiong didn’t know that Zai Tian invited Xi Ying as well. BUT Ying Xiong didn’t like Xi Ying, right? SO why would he let things drag or act guilty all of a sudden? He looked like he was guilty of something. What was even worse was how Ying Xiong offer to see Xi Ying off YET he did not have to do it AND did not have to encourage her more. (I didn’t say he had to force himself to like her since it was his choice after all, but it was not cool encouraging her at times, leading her on with not saying anything. Trying to be the nice guy didn’t help.) AND of course, she knew her case was already hopeless so she had to try and edge out of the situation and reduce the awkwardness on her own. So much for being a ‘hero’. (OR he liked Xi Ying before BUT not anymore since he found a better choice? BUT that was too lame still…)
  • Chen Lin kept nagging Pi Zi regarding how important Xiao Mei was to Pi Zi. She had no freaking right regardless of how she tried to defend herself. Honestly, to say, like he said, would she take a look at him with half of an eye IF he was still in his previous image/appearance? Like looking decent right now. Regardless of who Xiao Mei later came out to be, she was still a person of great importance to him because she did not look down on him when he was not in such a good condition. Like he said, aside from his mother, only she (Xiao Mei) treated him well.

Triangles:

  • The Zai Tian-Xi Ying-Ying Xiong triangle. I found it truly amusing at times with this triangle even if Ying Xiong wasn’t interested in Xi Ying in that way. It was funny how Ying Xiong had to protect Xi Ying from Zai Tian’s pass at times. And what was that with Ying Xiong questioning Xi Ying when he saw her using Zai Tian’s cup to drink water? Hmmm…OKAY…
  • The Zai Tian-Chen Lin-Ying Xiong triangle. Honestly, I didn’t care. Like I said earlier, I was rooting for Vic and Janine so it didn’t matter. Moreover, I found it strange that Zai Tian and Chen Lin could be a possibility because didn’t they have the same last name? Even if they were not blood-related, it was still weird. But this is just me. So, of course, I would prefer the Mark and Ivy pairing and couldn’t care less. But I was utterly confused at the beginning from time to time that Chen Lin seemed to like Ying Xiong yet she was eyeing Xi Ying with some sense of jealousy when Zai Tian was being closed to Xi Ying AND NOT because Ying Xiong was interacting with Xi Ying. Huh? Too distracting. I don’t know. It got even more and more confusing throughout–from time to time. Like it was on and off between who Chen Lin decided to be with or cared for. Too ironic. Her worrying for Zai Tian wasn’t just about friends BUT it went way past that. She needed to choose one guy and stick with him or convince better as of who she liked. (*NOTE*: Okay, so we found out later that Pi Zi was not really Chen Zai Tian aka just a fake name BUT I just didn’t want him to be the interruption or in-between factor of the other two, making others hate him.) Oh yeah, I thought she was confused with her feelings at times, which might be true YET it felt like she was using Ying Xiong to make Pi Zi jealous. It seemed that way. I don’t know. It was just too confusing and distracting–like I said before and many times already. AND then it was revealed that she actually liked Pi Zi BUT so what? Using Ying Xiong was so wrong. OR she was confused. Yet I guess it was obvious that she liked Pi Zi but that went right back to me saying how she was using Ying Xiong. SO messed up.

Pairings:

  • Vic and Janine. OMG, they were so cute! I didn’t care if they had such a short gap of time together. It was just too amusing seeing how he teased her at times. He even gave her a cup for drinking purposes, instead of using those similar glasses to the ones they used at the lab. (YUP, that experience at his first visit was already too traumatizing, LOL!) The fact that they were more in sync with one another made it addicting to watch. Yes, he was loud and all at the beginning. But as the story developed, they seemed to have more in common and understanding the pain one another went through more than anything. It was a bond others could not understand.
  • Mark and Ivy. The typical tragic pairing. I meant regarding how he was a cop and she was the daughter of some triad boss. I guess they did match. Yet I was not too involved with their relationship. Just call me confused! ‘Cause I was too distracted with other things to pay attention. AND I can’t be forced to like every single pairing out there, right? I meant regarding their story. That’s all.
  • Mark and Sonia. I don’t know. It seemed so different–OF COURSE. Yet I felt their chemistry right away upon seeing her arrival at the police headquarter. I don’t know. It was their brief exchange with her smile and his stare. This is not just because I’m a major fan of Sonia. BUT because for some weird, weird reason, it just clicked with me just seeing them together like that. (I must confess I was a bit against it while reading spoilers and not knowing the gap of the story in between. So yes, I was really surprised to enjoy their chemistry.) Regardless of how twisted their story developed and turned out, I was still more convinced in regard to a romantic relation. The most tragic scene must be her death scene, which was already mentioned above, with her being able to choose finally.

Teams:

  • Vic and Mark as Pi Zi and Ying Xiong. Okay, that was hilarious. Typical approach with putting them into the same team. Yet I guess they achieved the effect. One of the funniest scenes must be when their boss tried to think up of a name for them, BUT then he scratched it off as being too long so he changed it into two words instead, LOL! The numerous times where Ying Xiong had to yell at Pi Zi was so funny too. I don’t know! Aggravating Ying Xiong was just too priceless SO it might be the reason why Pi Zi kept doing it in the later parts of the drama? LOL! At first, I found it hard to get used to them but around episode 16, it was a different story. I found their bond more genuine after seeing Ying Xiong let Zai Tian go at the bridge scene. It was because he knew what it was like and how Zai Tian had to sacrifice himself to save his father, save the only family he had left. The previous parts with the plot and the crazy triangles were too much of a distraction to see their bond.
  • Vic and Xiu Jie Kai as Pi Zi and Xiao Ma. I don’t know. Their chemistry was just more convincing for me. (Though I don’t disregard the formula the creators tried to lay out with the other two.) Perhaps because they’re good friends outside as well. Their constant exchange of words were amusing. Especially found it somewhat strange that Xiao Ma was the one taking Zai Tian home when he was devastated with Xiao Mei’s death that one time. Interesting part. Subtle but something to think about. And not to mention their collaboration during the time when Xiao Ma saved Pi Zi and Xi Ying; and the two guys ended up attacking the base with Xiao Ma’s guide. It was really something. I just love their collaboration. (AND man, I was so glad that my mom mentioned it since that meant I wasn’t the only one thinking they they looked alike in here. I swear!)

Questions:

  • Three guys liked Chen Lin? Unbelievable. NOT because she wasn’t pretty nor wasn’t spunky enough for the guys’ attention. But I was still not convinced. It was missing something. I could believe why Ying Xiong would like her since opposite attracts but Pi Zi and Xiao Ma? Maybe Xiao Ma liked her because she was so lively. BUT I still didn’t get what was the big deal about her. The inconsistent about her character made it harder. (Blame the scriptwriters for not covering that part well.)
  • They put us through the drama of the triangles because…? I don’t know. YES, I guess all movies/TV series have to have some degree of romance or it would turn out too bland (for some people) BUT what was the point if no one end up at all? OR perhaps they were trying to clear the schedule for the sequel? OKAY!
  • NO Pi Zi/Vic and Xi Ying/Janine unite scene? Okay, this was more of personal opinion since I felt robbed when the ending parts didn’t include a follow-up with the talk. I meant with when Pi Zi and Xi Ying said goodbye before the last battle, there was the talk and then the hug. What about after they succeeded? Come on now! At least give us a scene! OR maybe because they understand one another more than any words or actions? And that any other side talk was unnecessary because they didn’t need it like the others in here? I don’t know. Like I said, personal opinions!

Other thoughts? So it was worth the attention it received thus far, considering how everyone worked so hard to make it happen. It was sure an action pack! For the most part. Also, the cast was really huge all right since they needed a lot to make it more convincing and the whole powerful vibe between several parties. I guess I must cut them some slacks with letting us down at some parts. The whole large scale of everything was already something to think over and how they did with the set and all.

I guess the most puzzling question going into the sequel must be: How in the world are they going to work Pi Zi out of the script? I meant okay, my mom was suggesting how it would be with saying he had to work on another case so couldn’t chase these people with Ying Xiong anymore. I thought of that. OR he could have died. (Which would be a lame one.) OR just not mention him? Why was it hard to imagine if they were to pull one of those scenarios? Pi Zi finally found out that Xiao Mei wasn’t dead. With all the things that had been leading up to the ending, would he just walk away like that or agree to work on another case instead of finding out the truth? OR at least the whole face to face confrontation? If he died, it would make more sense as to why he wasn’t around anymore to get to the end of it. BUT that would be too typical and reminded me too much of a TVB easy exit for those formulas with cutting an important character out of it all. It was not about Vic, BUT about the smooth transition of the plot. There were a lot of draggy parts in this one so it wasn’t perfect with the series. (I made it through so I don’t care anymore.) BUT it must at least make sense with some of the parts with the continuation. So good luck!